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Mamiya 645 1000S

Discussion in 'Everything Film' started by KierFX, Dec 12, 2016.

  1. KierFX

    KierFX Well-Known Member

    Hi guys! Finally back!

    College has been hard work lately, but im here!

    I'm currently interested in selling all of my digital kit (not here, obviously) and moving entirely onto film. Crazy, eh? I have seen a Mamiya 645 1000S at a great price, only thing about it is.. the seller describes it as fully working, but if you set the shutter speed and fire the shutter through the prism viewfinder then the shutter will jam. However, if you use the shutter speed dial on the viewfinder purely to use the light meter, then after that set the shutter speed on the body its self then the shutter will work fine. Is this is a big problem? Is it fixable?

    Also, I have only ever been taught how to develop B&W, but I will want to shoot 120 c41 film with this camera, is C41 easy enough to develop at home/college?

    Thanks
    Kier
     
  2. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    I'd hold on to the digital just in case of regret. I don't follow your description but it sounds one to be avoided. Haven't done C41 but I think it is straightforward but needs consistent temperatures so you need all the baths and wash to be preheated before you start.
     
  3. KierFX

    KierFX Well-Known Member

    Thats what I thought about holding on, but theres an equipment store at college where I can rent out loads of kit, many of it far better than my kit I have at home (well not the bodys) but the lenses wise. I think its worth it, but might hold off. Whats the easiest process for colour dev? just c41? Black and white can be boring all the time.
     
  4. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Kieran,

    C41 is easy but temperature control is critical. Use a Jobo CPE or work in a big washing-up bowl of hot water.

    Frances wore out a Mamiya 645 from new. Also it's a pretty silly format: "super 35mm" rather than MF. Consider that a 3x enlargement off 6x7cm can be indistinguishable from a whole-plate contact print...

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  5. KierFX

    KierFX Well-Known Member

    oh, is it not medium format as
    Is it not proper medium format then? I want medium format for the difference to 35mm too. I dont know how to explain, but it looks different, nicer to say the least.

    As for the Jobo CPE, I'm sure that college will have something like that. They've got pretty much a entire corridor with darkrooms/labs, but at the moment they'll only let me do B&W. Roger, in your opinion, should I buy the M645? Its £180, which is quite cheap I think.
     
  6. KierFX

    KierFX Well-Known Member

    I'll pm you a link, if you'd take a look for me?
     
  7. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Kieran,

    I wouldn't buy it. Yes, MF looks nicer, and yes, 645 tips the balance. But only just. There is a much better look to smaller enlargements off still larger formats, for my money. Look out for 6x7 (obviously cropped 6x6 is much the same size as 645) or even 6x9 (possibly as a roll-film back on a 4x5 camera). Consider, too, borrowing/renting college kit to see the differences.

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  8. KierFX

    KierFX Well-Known Member

    Okay i'll go with your advice. The only medium format that college has as far as I know is hasselblads (film, and digi back) but both of these are only available to be used by degree students, while I am only pre-degree, ah well, ill find something.

    Thanks!
     
  9. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Kier,

    Buy ANYTHING 6x7 or 6x9, even a folder. Consider Graflex XL or Koni-Omega, for example. What you're buying, after all, is smoothness, tonality, fine grain. What sort of subjects are you planning on shooting on MF? And have you considered 4x5, with a 6x9 back if need be?

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  10. KierFX

    KierFX Well-Known Member

    Ill take a look at them! Im planning on shooting mostly portraits, with a little bit of street photography if my arms can cope with the weight! I haven't considered anything really. I looked at a Bronica s2a but it doesnt have a light meter and I really need a built in one.
     
  11. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Kier,

    For portraits I'd back 6x7 to 6x9, and SERIOUSLY consider a roll-film back on 4x5 with maybe a 135-150mm lens. Linhof Kardan Color cameras are often silly-cheap. For street; well, quite honestly, a folder. Even something like my Ikonta.

    Cheers,

    R.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2016
  12. KierFX

    KierFX Well-Known Member

    what models of cameras would you recommend? I know of that size but no clue what cameras are good for that format.
     
  13. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    They're mostly pretty good. Beware of press cameras with no movements, but consider old, big. heavy, underrated monorails such as Cambo. Or the Linhof Kardan Color: picture here. Pretty much any old lens will do. I probably have something lying around.

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  14. steveandthedogs

    steveandthedogs Well-Known Member

    A folder also has the advantage of being about the size of your hand and fitting in a coat pocket. So you can carry it around easily.

    S
     
  15. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    I humped a 645 outfit round for years, sometimes with two of these bodies. I always liked the cameras, but in the I started only to use them when I was driving around, due to the weight.

    A 645 that is known to be giving problems is something I would avoid personally, there are enough decent ones around. You mention the Bronica S2A, these are now old and likely to be difficult to get repaired, I did buy one about 1986, it was an insurance write-off that the shutter curtains had jumped on, I had it repaired by a local repairer, put a film through and got rid of it. I didn't like it, it made the Mamiya feel light and I wasn't confident that the repair would last either, still I made a goodly profit on it.
     
  16. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    The S2A are really old now. Don't worry about the built in light meter. Get a hand-held meter and learn how to use it. A waist-level finder is easier to use than a prism finder for the larger cameras and the shooting position is good for portraits. You could also look at TLRs but probably these are older than the S2A now.
     
  17. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Not entirely sure what you mean by that issue. There were 2 metered prisms for the 645/1000S, and I'm not sure that what you're describing isn't standard for the manual exposure one.

    I would give a different perspective on the 645. Mine is the original model, has had a lot of use and is still going strong. It's an extremely comfortable camera to use in my opinion, and it's really remarkably compact and light; carrying body, a couple of inserts, and a few lenses is broadly similar to the equivalent full frame DSLR system in size and weight.
    As to the format, well I would have agreed with Roger with films contemporaneous to the camera, but with modern films I think it's a perfectly good format.
    I don't disagree with Roger that 6x7 is a fine format; I also have a Pentax 67 outfit which produces great results, but is VERY much bigger and heavier to carry round.
    I couldn't disagree more with PeteRob about a WLF, particularly with rectangular formats - it's close to impossible to use in portrait format. On square formats, it does have advantages.
     
  18. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    I spoke wrt the S2a. I have only used a SQA which is square format - wasn't thinking of rectangular format used in portrait mode.
     
  19. Malcolm_Stewart

    Malcolm_Stewart Well-Known Member

    I'd strongly recommend that you get any C41 film developed professionally. It's done at around 38degC for a fixed time, and needs good temperature control etc. for consistency. If you want to experiment with developing, stick to B&W and try the different developers and films available - most of these can be done at around room temperature.

    My best MF B&W came from an old Rolleicord and FP4. Lovely well toned negatives, and sharp. Captured all of the family for a historic record - including those who tried hiding from the camera!
    Trying to repeat that success with my Mamiya 645 1000S a few years later produced a series of low contrast negatives which put me right off, as digital had then matured; and I still don't know whether my developer was duff or whatever!
     
  20. 0lybacker

    0lybacker In the Stop Bath

    Hi Kier, welcome back. Here's my pennyworth. Like Benchista, I'm not sure what you mean by the emboldened. Do you mean the mirror flips up and the viewfinder darkens? Have you checked the shutter is opening & closing with the camera back open and the film insert removed? This may seem obvious to many but it does not have an instant return mirror like a 35mm SLR. You will need to 'wind on' to get the mirror to return & the shutter to set ready for tripping on the next exposure.

    Is a move to medium format a good idea? Yes, if your technique - exposure measurement & subject application, development temperature, time & agitation, chemical mixing & cleanliness - is good. If it is sloppy with 35mm then you will not derive as much benefit from medium format as you hope for. You may then get trapped in upsizing with equipment chasing image quality that you might have reached with a smaller format and, perhaps, spending less money.

    Recommendations. I use medium format and am happy with an ancient Bronica SQ-a. Advantage over older Mamiyas is interchangeable magazines. Newer Bronicas SQ-ai/SQ-b, ETRSi are not as well made and feel different. (The focusing distance has been changed and it is not so good for ageing males! I have to use glasses.) The latest Bronica lenses and the previous series are good, the older ones not so good in terms of quality consistency. Good ones exist but you may have to search long and hard. Generally, Mamiya have a great reputation for their 645 format lenses and do a shift lens for the format, not quite so good for RB/RZ in 6x7 format but both of the latter offer a useful magazine rotation feature and can be tweaked to give 6x8 negs. Bronica allow easy swapping of films (and formats on SQ/SQ-a) and flash sync on all speeds.

    I had a club friend who had a Pentax 645 and whose images were extremely good, quality-wise. He switched to a larger format - may have been Pentax 6x7 but am not sure - in the search for better quality just as digital got going. I thought his IQ dropped fractionally, image NOT intelligence, that is. That said, Pentax 6x7 has been the choice of many pros, it can really cut the mustard.

    When film prices are high and may go higher, 645 format provides extra exposures when square negs may be cropped to rectangular anyway. Can be used without a prism but really needs to be on a good tripod with right & easy access to head adjustments. A Bronica ETRSi with grip & prism may not cost much and if well run in but not too knackered handle just like a 35mm camera when handheld. Good for weddings coupled to a Metz 45. BTW, Later Mamiya 645s can be used with digital backs. Theoretically the Bronnie 6x6s can but adaptors are expensive and now very rare. Avoid Hasselblad V series. Spares availability is very limited to non-existent and repairers are cannabilising cameras and lenses to keep others going.

    I remember that you want to do landscapes. If I made a change of format for landscape photography, it would be to a Fuji GX680 mk 2 or mk3/3s. It provides camera movements and rotating magazines. Medium format with a key benefit of large format film cameras. Lenses are good but limited range of focal lengths and the widest - 50mm - is very pricey as it is as rare as hens' teeth. I have kept some large format accessories but will probably never buy, only borrow, a L-F camera & lenses in future. Cheers, Oly
     

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